Founder: Albert Eadie and Robert Walker Smith
Headquarters: Redditch, Worcestershire
Royal Enfield was a brand name under which The Enfield Cycle Company Limited of Redditch, Worcestershire sold motorcycles, bicycles, lawnmowers and stationary engines which they had manufactured. Enfield Cycle Company also used the brand name Enfield without Royal.
The first Royal Enfield motorcycle was built in 1901. The Enfield Cycle Company is responsible for the design and original production of the Royal Enfield Bullet, the longest-lived motorcycle design in history.
Royal Enfield Bikes List
- Royal Enfield Classic 350
- Royal Enfield Bullet 350
- Royal Enfield Meteor 350
- Royal Enfield Himalayan
- Royal Enfield Interceptor 650
- Royal Enfield Continental GT 650
Royal Enfield Motors Timeline
- 1898 The first automotive vehicles with the Royal Enfield name were produced – a quadricycle with a De Dion-Bouton 2.75 hp engine. This was followed by a tricycle.
1900 By now the quadricycle and tricycle had been produced in some numbers.
- 1901 Produced the Motor Bicycle with a 150cc 1.5hp engine above the front wheel. As an early Werner design, the engine sat in front of the headstock and drove the rear wheel by a crossed belt that must have worn badly.
- 1902 The model continued for that year and was replaced by a similar contraption with an Enfield engine of 239cc 2.75hp.
- 1903 Two of the new models had Enfield engines mounted vertically in a loop frame. One was of 239cc with belt-drive, and the other 2.25hp water-cooled with chain drive to the rear wheel, but this was too expensive. A third model, with a Minerva engine hung from the down-tube, appeared and was soon dropped.
- 1904 The simple single remained – this with a 2.75hp or 3.5hp engine and belt drive – plus a cheaper air-cooled version.
- 1905 The cheaper model now had two-speed gear. The company’s attentions began to turn to cars.
- 1906 Produced 16-20 and 24-30 h.p. automobiles with shaft-drive and four-cylinder engines.
- 1907 The company merged with Alldays and Onions and produced cars called Enfield-Allday until 1925.
- 1909-1910 They returned to powered two-wheelers late in 1909, and produced the first of the famous Enfield V-twins, first with Motosacoche 344cc 2.75hp engines, later with Enfield’s own engine.
- 1911 A 2.75hp, 343cc model appeared with a V-twin engine, chain drive and the option of two-speed gearing. One such machine came fifth in the Junior TT and others saw success at Brooklands.
- 1912 There were three models for that year: the 2.75hp V-twin, a 2.5hp ladies’ single and a 6hp sidecar V-twin using a JAP engine. Chain drive, two speeds and Druid forks were common to all. The Enfield Cush drive made its first appearance.
- 1913 The twins were joined by a 3hp model with a 424cc Royal Enfield engine with overhead inlet-valves and a dry-sump lubrication system. Until World War I, the big twins with 770cc, 6hp JAP engines and after WWI 976cc, 8hp Vickers-Wolseley engines.
- 1914 Little changed, but a TT version of the 3hp twin was added. Again the firm entered the Junior TT but what success they had was soon wiped out by tragedy when F. J. Walker came third but crashed at the finish and later died from his injuries. During the year the firm added a 225cc two-stroke, two-speed to the range. Lightweight and simple in design, the model had a long and successful lifespan.
- 1915 The first of the small two-stroke 225cc engines, starting with model 200, appeared.
- 1919 Civilian models returned in 1919, with just two forms. The 6 hp JAP V-twin with an 8hp engine option for sidecar work, and the 225cc two-stroke as basic transport.
- 1921 the larger model changed to a 976cc V-twin Wolseley engine made by Vickers to an Enfield design.
- 1923 Late in the year the range expanded by adding singles with 346cc sv and ohv JAP engines, still with two speeds.
- 1924 Three-speeds appeared, firstly on the four-strokes. In came drum brakes and some machines had a 346cc sv Enfield engine in preference to the JAP.
- 1925 A similar ohv model was produced.
- 1926 A 488cc sv model joined the range.
- 1928 At last there was success in the TT, when Cecil Barrow came second in the Lightweight. The road range adopted saddle tanks and centre-spring forks and was joined by a 225cc sv model. Most now had three-speed and some had four.
- 1929 A new model was brought out as a 488cc ohv with twin-ports.
- 1930 The first J model appeared in 1930. Throughout the decade there was a large variety of models from small two-strokes to large side valves, from A-Z. A 225cc two stroke, B 225 cc sv, BO 250cc ohv Bullet, C 350cc sv, CO 350cc ohv, G 350cc ohv Bullet, H 488cc sv, J 488cc ohv, J2 488cc two port ohv, K 976cc sv v-twin, L 570cc sv, T 148cc ohv, Z (Cycar) 148cc two-stroke and many more variants.
- 1931 All the singles had inclined engines, some of which had been modified.
- 1932 The radical new model called the Cycar appeared.
- 1933 The first Bullet 500cc single, with exposed four-valve rocker gear and inclined engine, was introduced.
- 1935 They changed to three valves. These engines had their integral oil tank in front of the crankshaft, while post-war Bullet oil tanks were behind the crank. They were dry sump, the integral tank being separate from the crankshaft space. Royal Enfield entered a 500cc Four valve-Racing model for the Senior TT 1935. This was the last TT Royal Enfield entered. Despite having entered in the TT from 1911, the factory never managed a first place.
- 1936 A new series of singles took over. These had vertical engines with oil sump in the crankcase. The range covered all the sizes described above.
- 1937 British Industries Fair Advert for Royal Enfield Motor Lawn Mowers. Also for Motorcycles, Cycles and Motor Carriers. All made throughout in the famous Royal Enfield Works at Redditch, of all-British materials and components. (Engineering/Metals/Quarry, Roads and Mining/Transport Section – Stand No. B.427)
- 1938 Royal Enfield 500cc single port J model ohv. During the 1920s a mid-range of Enfields left the Redditch factory: model 350 (350cc SV), 351 (350cc OHV) and 352 (350cc twinport sports). The two-valve J model rockers were enclosed, and the engine became upright. Model K side-valve V-twin had grown to 1140cc and was then called KX.
- 1947 The Royal Enfield 500cc Model J was back in production, but was now fitted with telescopic forks with two-way hydraulic damping instead of the old pre-war girder forks. The front axle mountings were offset forward of the fork legs.
- 1948 The J2 model, with ‘twin exhaust ports’ and pipes, was released initially for export only. The J2 exhaust port split into two after the exhaust valve, so the difference was more for appearance.
- 1949 K. R. Sundaram Iyer launches Madras Motors to import British motorcycles within India’s territory. Besides Norton and Matchless machines, he sells Royal Enfields.
- 1952 Madras Motors receives an order from the Indian Army for 800 350cc Bullets. At the beginning of 1953, the shipping arrived in India and they proved to be a great success because of their hardy and easy to maintain aspects. Johnny Brittain won the prestigious Scottish Six Days Trial on his 350cc Bullet, “HNP 331”.
- 1955 the Redditch company became partner of Madras Motors and they founded ‘Enfield India’. They engaged in the construction of a purpose-built factory at Tiruvottiyur, near Madras.
- 1956 the Tiruvottiyur factory opened and Bullets began to be manufactured under license. The early production was based on machines that came from England in sets subsequently assembled in Madras. A total of 163 Bullets were built by the end of that year.
- 1964 the iconic Continental GT café racer was launched to great acclaim when a team of photojournalists ride it from John ‘o Groats to Lands End in under 24 hours, by way of 7 laps at the Silverstone circuit. The GT featured a racing petrol tank, clip-on handlebars, rear sets, a humped race seat, rev counter and a swept-back exhaust.
- 1977, Royal Enfield was back at home because of Indian companies export of the 350cc Bullet to the UK and Europe. Sales grew rapidly as the bikes developed, followed by classic British motorcycle enthusiasts.
- 1994, the Eicher Group acquired Enfield India Limited. The company was renamed Royal Enfield Motors Limited.
- 2013 Royal Enfield commenced to manufacture at its second facility at Oragadam, Tamil Nadu. With increased capacity, the state-of-art factory will be the nucleus of the company’s global ambitions in the future.
- 2014, Royal Enfield introduced the possibility of a new retail experience by opening the first-of-its-kind exclusive gear store at Khan Market, New Delhi.
- 2015, Royal Enfield set up its first direct distribution subsidiary outside India, in North America. Royal Enfield’s North American headquarters are located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Actually they see nearly over 2.000 units per year.
- 2016, Royal Enfield launched the Himalayan. With the all-new LS410 engine and terrain-tested suspension, it was promising the ride of a lifetime on all roads and no roads.
- 2017, Royal Enfield moved into its fully operational Technology Centre in UK at Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground, Leicester and started to produce from its third manufacturing facility at Vallam, near Chennai.
- 2021 Royal Enfield is expected to launch 5 bikes in the year 2021-2022. 2021 Royal Enfield Classic 350, Royal Enfield Hunter 350 and Royal Enfield Roadster 650 are launching soon.